ITE and Microsoft Collaborate to Equip over 4,000 Students with Responsible AI Skills

 |   Singapore News Center

SINGAPORE, 27 May 2022 – Today, the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) and Microsoft announce the launch of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Lab in ITE College East, which will serve as an innovation center to introduce AI concepts, skills, and applications across industries to ITE students. This collaboration stems from both organizations’ shared goal to broaden exposure of responsible AI principles and provide skilling opportunities to over 4,000 students as they step into a resilient, digitally inclusive future workforce.

The AI Lab serves as a teaching center and resource for educators to facilitate students’ exploration of AI tools and responsible AI principles, as well as a showcase studio for ITE College East visitors. It also features mock-ups, comprising demonstrations from Microsoft Demos that focus on the use of responsible AI across Machine Learning, Deep Learning, Computer Vision, and Natural Language Processing. The demonstrations will also include case studies in the Arts, Business, Entertainment, and Healthcare sectors, and highlights from ITE lecturers leveraging real-life, relevant examples to engage students in an interactive and engaging manner.

Mr Peh Wee Leng, Director of School of Electronics and Info-Comm at ITE College East shared about the institution’s unique teaching pedagogy approach, “The ‘movie-fication’ approach starts by introducing students to AI movies. Educators can then leverage the content shown in these movies to showcase AI’s evolution and growing importance over the years and teach students about the principles of Responsible Use of AI. Students are encouraged to learn from the AI concepts portrayed in the movies and apply them to their projects and daily life applications. This draws relevance and relatability of AI to our day-to-day and creates more enjoyable lessons for the students.”

The launch of the AI Lab is part of ITE’s broader push to equip its students with relevant digital and AI skills. As part of its new 3-year Higher Nitec full-time programme, ITE is offering an AI-focused curriculum to students starting their ITE journey in the 2022 Academic Year.

Attendees were able to try the AI experience at the official launch of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Lab in ITE College East.

The AI curriculum features an “AI Applications Fundamentals Elective”, which was developed using relevant content from Microsoft Learn’s curriculum. This elective course focuses on honing students’ technical knowledge and preparing them for industry‑related certification exams upon the completion of the course. At the end of the course, students will be able to take up industry certifications, such as the “Microsoft Certified Azure AI Fundamentals” and “Microsoft Certified Azure Developer Associate”, arming them with stronger credentials for an increasingly digital workforce.

The elective course is open to students across all three ITE Colleges from Higher Nitec in IT Applications Development, Higher Nitec in IT Systems and Network, Higher Nitec in Cyber & Network Security and Higher Nitec in Business Information Systems. Eligible students will be able to enroll into the new elective from April 2022 onwards.

Ms Low Khah Gek, Chief Executive Officer of ITE, said, “ITE is committed to equipping our students with AI social and technical skills for real-world applications and enabling them to be AI-ready for work. This partnership with Microsoft has allowed us to develop a robust AI-focused curriculum with a unique ‘movie-fication’ pedagogy that will motivate and inspire our students’ creativity.”

Ms Low Khah Gek, Chief Executive Officer of ITE (middle) and the first batch of ITE College East students enrolled in courses with AI-focused curriculum. The students demonstrated their AI projects at the official launch of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Lab.

Ms Lum Seow Khun, Director of Public Sector Group, Microsoft Singapore added, “Singapore continues to deploy AI at a national scale as it moves to develop its position as a Smart Nation through Industry Transformation plans. Organizations continue to see a gap in AI skillsets and talent as they adopt machine learning, deep learning and natural language processing. Through collaborations like these, we hope to use digital literacy as a catalyst to drive equitable growth, while ensuring that we bridge the gap between skilling and employability for a resilient, digitally inclusive Singapore.”

Richard Koh, Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft Singapore and the first batch of ITE College East students enrolled in courses with AI-focused curriculum.